LA CRESCENTA — Displaying its considerable depth in Thursday’s 25-3 season-opening nonleague win over La Cañada High, the Crescenta Valley girls’ water polo team got goals from 12 players.
“It’s encouraging to see, this is a deep, deep team,” said Falcons Coach Pete Loporchio, whose team returned 14 players and sustained minimal losses from last year’s CIF quarterfinalist squad. “We were deep last year, but I think this team is deeper.
“It’s nice to see the contributions, we tried to rotate everyone as much as we can.”
By contrast, the Spartans (0-2) have a mostly inexperienced team with just four senior returners and, from the beginning, it was clear that La Cañada had no answer for the ease and balance with which the Falcons cruised through the match.
“The reality is they’re too much for us,” said first-year Spartans Coach Josh Moser, who previously coached water polo at nearby Flintridge Prep. “I’ve got girls who have played one water polo game ever at the varsity level going against a team that plays year-round together as a group.
[Crescenta valley] is a real good team. I’m obviously not happy [with losing] 25-3. A lot of those goals were very preventable and a lot of those things shouldn’t happen a month from now.”
The Falcons played without last year’s leading scorer and the program’s all-time single-season scoring record-holder Kim Fraisse, who is recovering from a sore shoulder.
“It’s a long season and we just want to make sure she’s healthy at the right time,” Loporchio said.
Fraisse’s teammates had no problem picking up the slack, as Sabrina Hatzer, Stephanie Loporchio, Claire Nolan, Daniella Khatchetourian and Karina Alvarez all put up three goals each.
Crescenta Valley led, 5-0, after the first four minutes and had the match well in hand by halftime with a 13-2 lead. The Falcons would outscore the Spartans, 11-0, over the final 13:25 of the match.
Rachel Krebsbach, Channon Hovanesian and Kristina Molder each scored twice for the Falcons, who got single goals from Nayiri Kechichian, Christine Cho, Breanna Lawton and Amber Matherly.
La Cañada, which next plays in the Burbank Tournament, got all three of its goals from Rita Neat.
“We’re going to be in good shape,” Moser said. “This is not indicative of where we’re going to end up.
“We’ve got a while until league play starts up and that’s when we want to be hitting on all cylinders.”